Wednesday, May 23, 2012


We are photographing a wedding in Naples, Florida this weekend. I started thinking about what I would need to do after the wedding day. 

After the wedding, it usually takes me about four days to digitally edit the images we made, usually 1200 to 1600 images. Two days after the wedding, I download all the images from our compact flash cards to an external drive. We shoot raw (large files) and if I put them on my Mac, it would not take long to fill up the drive. I never format the cards until I have finished working on the images. By the way, you might ask, why two days? Well, I need at least one day to decompress and then start up again. 

Next, I sort the images and choose which ones we will present to the couple. There are usually about a thousand.  I then work on each image individually. Some are simple edits; white balance adjustments, noise reduction and sharpening. Others require a little more work as I artistically design each image. Some will be black and white or have a tone shade added: think sepia or other tones. Some, will have a retro look while others, might be cropped to add that artistic touch. 

I might also need to digitally remove a hand or other body part that is intruding into a image (usually during the dancing) at the reception. I stay away from selective coloring for the most part, maybe average one image, every other wedding. This is based on whether I feel the image works best that way. I think if there are too many images with selective coloring, your album looks dated. (If your not sure of what I mean, think of black and white images where one item, usually a flower, is in color). If the bride and groom request more, then I will add more. After all, these are their wedding images and wedding album. They should have it the way they want!  

After I finish my post production, we upload all the images to a password protected website for guests from the wedding to view. (That is, if they wrote their email address on the forms we placed at each table during the reception).  If they do and we can read them, they will receive an email inviting them to the site to view the images.

The next phase for us is to wait for the couple to choose about 20 - 25 images that they want included in their wedding album. Once we know the images they have selected, I design the wedding album. Each album I design is different, no two are alike. Each album averages 20 pages, although there is an option to add more pages at a reasonable cost. I use the images they have selected and add others I feel are appropriate to keep the story flowing. 

Here is an example of an album starting with the first page.

We also offer large mounted and/or framed images from the wedding day. This image (16x24) will be hanging in our office/studio.

We also offer a video of some of their images which can be put on YouTube and played on their computer or on a DVD to played in any compatible DVD player.

So if you thought that the photographer's work was over after
the wedding day, it is not !! It is a long day, usually 11-12 hours with two photographers shooting all day from bridal prep to the last dance. But we love it! We would not want to do any other work !!!

Monday, May 21, 2012


Photographically I really love clouds and try to highlight them in many of my land/seascapes. I just think they are so dramatic moving through the sky. During the golden hours they herald the coming of glorious sunrises and sunsets. Before and during storms they speak to us of the power and beauty of nature. I think nature sends us messages through the clouds, if we only listen.  Next time you're sitting outside, look up at the clouds. If you listen, you will hear nature sending you messages. 

You can find answers to your questions about your life while looking at clouds. At times you can find an inner peace while seeing clouds. Other times you can see that all storms pass and usually there is a sunny day coming on the other side!! Nature 'gotta get a message to you' and all you have to do is look, see and listen.

The other night Phyllis and I were having dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in our area, Cobalts in Vero Beach. Readers of my blog have seen images I have taken from their very large patio that overlooks the ocean. After we have dinner, we will usually move over to their fire pit for a few adult beverages. As we were sitting around the pit, I brought my Nikon to my eye and started 'seeing' the night.  There were some really interesting clouds hovering over the ocean which is a common sight in Florida. I started searching for answers as I looked at the clouds. What were they trying to tell/show me tonight? I listened and hoped I heard the clouds' messages that night!!

Last night I knew I was going to use my images of clouds in a post today but I didn't know exactly how they would figure in. I had an idea about using, 'Both Sides Now', a song Joni Mitchell wrote while looking out an airplane window at clouds. Then I woke up up and looked at CNN on my computer and saw the sad news about Robin Gibbs passing away from cancer! I knew that my choice of songs had changed. I remembered one of the songs that Robin sang lead on was called, 'I've Gotta Get A Message To You!' As sometimes happens, the song fit perfectly into the message of the post I wanted to write.

Robin and his two brothers were known as the Bee Gees and in the late 60s and 70s they were a major influence in the world of song and song writing!!  They sky rocketed to new heights in 1977 with the release of the movie, 'Saturday Night Fever, starring John Travolta that was built around the group's falsetto voices and disco friendly songs.

One of the sad parts of growing older is that many of the icons of your youth pass away. We have lost quite a few music icons this year; Don Cornelius, Dick Clark, Donna Summers and now Robin Gibbs. Like many of my generation, the Bee Gees were for many years 'the' group, especially if you enjoyed dancing or just great harmonies! Now, two of the three brothers are gone and our lives move on searching for answers. If you think about it, that is what life is all about; searching for answers. So as you look for answers, look up at the clouds and listen. You just might hear the message you're looking for!!

R.I.P Robin: Your music and message will live on!!

Thursday, May 17, 2012


For a wedding photographer there are the key moments, the can't miss shots during every wedding day!! The moment when the bridal dress is put on, the first time the groom sees his bride in her dress, the 'KISS', the first dance and the last dance are all examples. For me some of the most fascinating moments involve the father of the bride.The first time he sees her in her dress, their dance and the menu of emotions that is his face that day!!. 

It must be a very complex day for him, a day of mixed feelings. Do  those feelings include happiness, pride and love? No doubt, all those feelings, but a little droplet of sadness is mixed in. His little girl is leaving now, in most cases, geographically, she is not going that far but emotionally she is making a gigantic leap. She now has a new man in her life. Her husband now becomes the most important man in her life. The father knows he still has a spot in her heart but just not the same spot. 

As we photograph the wedding day and later when I am doing post production, I am often moved by what I see. During the day, I see so many emotions coming out of this man, the father of the bride.
One of my favorite movies is  'Guess Whose Coming to Dinner', starring Spencer Tracy, Katherine Hepburn and Sidney Poitier. Watch Tracy's last scene in movies (he would die a few weeks after it was released) and you can feel some of the emotions of a father.

Now enjoy some of our images of the wedding day reflected in the father's face.

          Yes those are bubbles !!

In this next image you may be wondering, where the dad is, well the dad is the minister.